ISU back for more


For the first time in NIU history, the Huskie volleyball team is going to the NCAA Tournament.

And who do they draw in the first round? That’s right, inter-state rival Illinois State University, the same team the Huskies beat right here in DeKalb last Nov. 2.

Actually, the Huskies have beaten ISU the last two times they’ve met. And both times NIU came from behind in the first game to take the match in four games.

So the Redbirds will step onto the hardcourt in Chick Evans Field House at 4 p.m. on Wednesday with revenge on their minds.

“We’re really excited to play them,” said senior outside hitter Nikki Kozak. “It’s going to be a great match. It always is against them.”

Home court advantage means a lot in this one. ISU was ranked ninth nationally in attendance before post-season play. It will help to have the crowd rooting for the you instead of wishing you’d fall flat on your face.

Of course ISU will probably bring along a few well wishers, at least more than the “busloads” of people that Redbird head coach Julie Morgan promised that would show up in red at the last match (there was maybe 25 people that slunk out of Chick Evans that night).

“Hopefully we’ll have a great turnout like we did last time (against ISU, 1,216),” Kozak said. “It’s great to play the first game (of the tournament) at home. It lets the seniors have one more game in front of the home crowd.”